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Ontario Launches Aboriginal Procurement Program

Archived News Release

Ontario Launches Aboriginal Procurement Program

Province Helping Aboriginal Businesses Build Capacity, Form Partnerships

Ministry of Indigenous Affairs

Ontario is launching a new initiative that will help Aboriginal business owners sell products and services to the Ontario government and help them secure future contracts and clients.

The Aboriginal Procurement Program will result in more opportunities for Aboriginal suppliers to do business with the Ontario government. Provincial ministries will be encouraged to buy from Aboriginal-owned businesses when goods and services benefit Aboriginal people or communities.

The program will provide Aboriginal businesses with a better understanding of the government procurement process while also helping to create partnerships between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal businesses by encouraging joint ventures for large contracts.

As part of Ontario's commitment to transparency, an annual report will be released publicly to show the government's progress on increasing procurement from Aboriginal suppliers.

Encouraging Aboriginal business development and supporting employment opportunities for Aboriginal businesses and organizations is part of the government's economic plan to build Ontario up. The four-part plan includes investing in people's talents and skills, making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario's history, creating a dynamic and innovative environment where business thrives, and building a secure retirement savings plan.

Quick Facts

  • There are more than 9,000 entrepreneurs in Ontario who identify as First Nation, Métis or Inuit.
  • The Aboriginal Procurement Program builds on lessons learned during a pilot program which ran from 2012-14.
  • The Program is one of several tools the Ontario government is using to help grow Aboriginal businesses, including the Aboriginal Economic Development Fund and the Aboriginal Business Development Toolkit.

Additional Resources


“Over the past year we’ve launched new economic development initiatives for Aboriginal businesses and communities. Our Aboriginal Procurement Program not only complements our existing supports, but it will also help Aboriginal business owners build capacity and grow Ontario together.”

David Zimmer

Minister of Aboriginal Affairs

“Our government is committed to continuing to work with our vendors to make it easier for them to do business and deliver great results and value for all Ontarians. Our province's Aboriginal community is an important part of this effort, and we're looking forward to strengthening this relationship as we continue to work together.”

David Orazietti

Minister of Government and Consumer Services

“The Aboriginal Procurement Program supports First Nations entrepreneurs and business owners. Across Ontario, First Nations are seeking greater access to Ontario’s economy and are ready to move forward in the spirit and intent of our Treaties. I encourage initiatives such as this that create hope, opportunity and capacity for First Nations and our citizens.”

Isadore Day

Ontario Regional Chief, Chiefs of Ontario

“Encouraging First Nation people to participate in and create a solid economy in which they are strong players is the goal of Nishnawbe Aski Nation. The tools and financial options for success are becoming more readily available to all First Nations individuals, companies and partnerships. I encourage everyone to take advantage of these opportunities. It is initiatives like these that will lead our Nation to economic independence.”

Les Louttit

Deputy Grand Chief, Nishnawbe Aski Nation

“The Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB) for over thirty years has connected Aboriginal businesses with business in Canada. Forward thinking opportunities such as the Aboriginal Procurement Program, continue to strengthen existing and potential business relationships. CCAB is proud to help support the development of this kind of innovative programming through our research as we collectively work toward business certainty and equitable prosperity for all Canadians.”

JP Gladu

President and CEO, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business



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